Gender & Sexuality dictionary

folx

[fohks]

What does folx mean?

A variation on the word folks, folx is meant to be a gender-neutral way to refer to members of or signal identity in the LGBTQ community.

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Related words

🏳️‍🌈- rainbow flag emoji , nonbinary gender, gender-fluid, gender-neutral pronouns, queer, safe space

Where does folx come from?

supervisorkuehl.com

While we can find folx as a general colloquial spelling of folks in the 1990s, the LGBTQ folx showed up in a blog post on queerbychoice.com in 2001. In the post, the author, Clare, uses the phrase queer folx to refer to herself and members of the LGBTQ community.

The x in folks not only represents the sound of the word’s plural, but it also uses the symbolism of letter X to represent “variable” or “other,” here the diverse and nonbinary identities in the LGBTQ community. The term Latinx (vs. the masculine Latino or feminine Latina) works similarly.

In 2014, a Tumblr post by Trans Folx Fighting Eating Disorders stated that they use the term in order to be inclusive of people with different gender identities. However, while use of folx is meant to be welcoming of all members of the LGBTQ community, a 2016 study done by linguist Levi C.R. Hord of the University of Western Ontario found that only a very small percentage of the community are familiar with the term.

Examples of folx

Fontana and Rialto fires now? Fucking hell. / How many folx wanna bet this is a bunch of arson copycats?
@LaPecheRoyale, November 2018
...Seeing individuals who have made fun of marginalized folx, belittled them, who have been cruel, who put themselves above everyone else in this community, getting praised and being called "beacons of inclusivity". It makes me feel too many sad things.
@MystyVander, November 2018
Utah Valley University
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Who uses folx?

Folx is most commonly found on social media platforms and blogs. Sometimes the term is used as a collective way to refer to people in the LGBTQ community or a particular subsection of it, e.g., lesbian folx.

However, it’s also used to refer to all people while being inclusive of people in marginalized communities.

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Note

This is not meant to be a formal definition of folx like most terms we define on Dictionary.com, but is rather an informal word summary that hopefully touches upon the key aspects of the meaning and usage of folx that will help our users expand their word mastery.